From The Golden Thread Mailbag …
Working With Designers

Hi Scott,

I’m sooo close to finishing the vitamin assignment. But before I submit it … there is one thing I am not clear on.

Section 37 – the “putting it together” section. It describes doing things like putting info into parentheses and describing where italicized fonts and underlining should be. I’m confused, because I assumed that the whole letter was to be written with those font features and other writing styles already done. As I read the section, it describes what seems like writing plain text, then placing descriptions for areas that are to be written differently. Am I misunderstanding something?

– Terri

Hello Terri,

As a copywriter, you are not responsible for designing the DM package. The company you are writing for will pay a professional graphic designer to do the layout. And, as an assignment for the copywriting program, we are not evaluating you on the layout.

That being said … as a professional copywriter, you will have to learn how to give some direction to the graphic designer. In other words, you should have a concrete idea of how you would like the package that you are writing to look. You convey your ideas about the look the way the program tells you to do it in Section 37.

This includes things like putting your headline and subheads in bold, directing the designer as to where to put testimonials and asides (by putting these directions in parentheses following the text), where you want the text to be in a different color. Many of our copywriting members also take the graphic design course specifically for this reason.

All of these little things will make you an easier copywriter to work with. And that will get you hired more often.

Hi Scott,

I am currently taking the copywriting program, and I am enjoying it very much. I want to pass on to your readers a simple but effective study technique that I learned years ago and that really works for me.

As you go through the program, jot down on a separate piece of paper brief notes of the key concepts that you learn. Next to each note, include the page number, so you can easily refer to it in the program material. Title your notes “AH HAH!” By doing this, you will have a quick reference resource at the end of the program for writing copy successfully.

– Roy H.

Thanks for the tip, Roy.

Hi Scott,

I’ve been working my way through Michael Masterson’s Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting. I’m also a subscriber to the Early to Rise e-newsletter. Between the two, my confidence is expanding as well as my writing skills. It’s been a slow process with my other obligations (read: job). But I wanted to share a brief story.

I’ve written a very successful “sales” letter for a fundraising effort at our school. Our Marching Band is the only band in the state to be invited to play in the National Memorial Day Parade in Washington, D.C. So I drafted a letter asking for corporations to help sponsor the trip (a $60,000 venture) so that each member of the Marching Band could participate.

That letter has so far garnered $10,000 in sponsorships! This will help defer much of the cost that the students must (so far) bear. I only wish I had “invoiced” the letter. But, it’s done so well that I’m using it as one of my samples.

I used techniques I learned from the program, such as “Picture, Proof, Promise, USP.” And I was surprised. (Not that the techniques work, but that I could do it!).

So I guess I’m finding the “glicken.” The best part is … I’m only through the first TWO parts of the program. I can’t wait to delve into the rest.

– Shawn M.

Hi Shawn,

Wow! It sounds like you are getting some very valuable experience … as well as your first taste of “glicken”

That’s it for this week. Thanks to one and all. And keep those emails coming!


The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

At last, a professional organization that caters to the needs of direct-response industry writers. Find out how membership can change the course of your career. Learn More »

Click to Rate:
No ratings yet
Published: January 30, 2006

Guest, Add a Comment
Please Note: Your comments will be seen by all visitors.

You are commenting as a guest. If you’re an AWAI Member, Login to myAWAI for easier commenting, email alerts, and more!

(If you don’t yet have an AWAI Member account, you can create one for free.)

This name will appear next to your comment.

Your email is required but will not be displayed.

Text only. Your comment may be trimmed if it exceeds 500 characters.

Type the Shadowed Word
Too hard to read? See a new image | Listen to the letters

Hint: The letters above appear as shadows and spell a real word. If you have trouble reading it, you can use the links to view a new image or listen to the letters being spoken.

(*all fields required)